By Joshua Rose, AmeriCorps Member, Serving at McDonough Elementary School

Martin Luther King Jr. Day is an opportunity to get involved in a day of national service to honor the memory of a true civil servant. In New Hampshire, City Year worked alongside other AmeriCorps members from across the state to provide care packages for those who are in need. The care packages offered socks, hats, gloves, toothbrushes, and peanut butter by the thousands to the people of New Hampshire. These products were donated by AmeriCorps members and our supporters. The MLK Day volunteers organized these donations into take-away bags for families to have easy access to. 

Throughout the day of service, the AmeriCorps volunteers were joined by a few speakers including Gretchen Berger-Wabuti (Executive Director of Volunteer NH) and Shireen Tilley (State Director for the Corporation for National and Community Service) as well as a panel that featured speakers from the New Hampshire Coalition to End Homelessness’ Granite Leaders program. Together we discussed the turmoil of the civil rights movement, the effects of global starvation and the hardships suffered by those who do not have the means to provide for themselves, concluding that active civil engagement is a necessity for a successful democracy. The speakers offered us an opportunity to thank all those who gave their lives for the rights of others, and motivated us to follow in their footsteps and ensure others the same rights that we have.

Martin Luther King's legacy teaches us to raise our voices for the rights of others, and to offer our time, resources and most of all our hearts to those in need. This day was a reminder for us all to remember the call to service and build a strong community. 

I found this service day in remembrance of Dr. King to be a powerful motivator to immerse myself into my community and to become aware of the pressing social matters in my own city that are often overlooked. This day reminded me to lose myself in the service of something greater than myself, and to be vigilant in my social awareness. Martin Luther King's message of love, kindness, compassion and commitment to service has reminded me of what it means to be a City Year AmeriCorps Member. 

Click to read an article on the day in the Union Leader.

Click to watch a video on the day on WMUR. 

AmeriCorps Members listening to a presentation
on Martin Luther King Jr.

AmeriCorps members hear from a pannel of
Granite Leaders as they share their experiences
of being homeless,

City Year and other AmeriCorps members
preparing care packages for NH homeless shelters.

Amanda Forget, City Year AmeriCorps Vista, leading
the group in the Hunger Banquet. 




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